Freestyle Libre meter deemed safe for children

By Editor
7th February 2017
Continuous glucose monitoring, Lead stories Medical devices Paediatrics Research Self management Self-monitoring of blood glucose Technology

A new type of glucose monitoring system which eliminates the “pain and burden” of routine finger pricks has been deemed safe for children with type 1 diabetes to use, according to research.

Abbott’s Freestyle Libre flash glucose was put to the test by a team at Oxford Children’s Hospital, who wanted to find out the “accuracy, safety and acceptability” of the device among young people.

As part of the study, just under 90 children were recruited from nine different diabetes centres in the UK.

They were all aged between four and 17 and asked to use the technology, which consists of a wearable glucose sensor that measures and stores blood-sugar levels of the child. The device was approved for use in children in the UK last year.

The authors concluded: “Accuracy was unaffected by subject characteristics, making the system potentially suitable for a broad range of children and young people with diabetes.

“It is anticipated that the provision of comprehensive glucose data for up to 14 days, from a system that is easy to use, with reduced pain and burden for the user since there is no requirement for finger-prick calibration, could support enhanced diabetes management.”

The findings were published in the BMJ in the archives of Disease in Childhood.

The technology, which is still not currently available on the NHS, has become popular among the diabetes community. This is because wearing the sensor, which is also water resistant is seen to a more convenient way of checking blood-glucose levels.

European regulators gave the go-ahead for the system to be used for children. Speaking last year, Abbot’s senior vice-president of diabetes care, Jared Watkin, said: “Children and teens with diabetes and their families have to navigate many challenges in their daily lives as they care for this complex condition.

“The scientists and engineers at Abbott have made it their life’s work to provide the most innovative technology to help people with diabetes improve their diabetes management and ultimately, live happier and healthier lives.”

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